An £836,000 grant has been conditionally awarded to Eden council to transform Voreda House into a zero carbon public service hub.
The conditional grant, from the Government, will help pay for the planned refit.
The district council plans to establish a single site for its staff at Voreda House – which had previously been owned by the NHS – and planning permission is being sought to replace the existing concrete cladding with an airtight super insulated timber frame, to be produced by a local manufacturer, as part of a net zero carbon retrofit.
A report, set to go before a meeting of the authority’s budget planning committee tomorrow night, says a detailed business plan is being prepared for the transformation of Voreda House into a modern, zero carbon public service hub.
It said it would be “designed to secure and futureproof the delivery of quality services to customers in the area” whatever the configuration of local government going forward.
“The council has been conditionally awarded £836,000 government grant to fit out the building to achieve net zero carbon in line with our sustainable strategic priority,” the report said.
In addition, an estimated rental stream of £30,000 could be achieved through partners sharing the building.
The report to district councillors adds that work is underway with a number of potential partners and the figure of £30,00 provides a “prudent estimate” of what could be achieved in the likely available space.
Eden Council’s plan to redevelop Voreda House has been met with criticism in some quarters, given the uncertainty which surrounds local government in Cumbria, with reorganisation being on the cards.
Penrith town councillors are holding an extraordinary meeting tonight to consider a motion calling on Eden Council to halt all plans for its redevelopment until it is known what the make-up of local government in the county will look like post-reorganisation.